Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving from our family to yours

On behalf of our Board of Directors and BlazeSports Staff,  we wish you a Happy Thanksgiving and all the best this holiday season.

At BlazeSports, we are very thankful for the wonderful and inspirational families and individuals we serve each day, our amazing core of volunteers and interns for their time and support, our funders, and our generous donors…for helping us achieve our mission in changing the lives of individuals with physical disabilities through sport and active living. 

Wishing each of you a healthy, safe (and active) Thanksgiving!

Posted in News |

BlazeSports November 2013 E-newsletter

Read all about it….See what we’ve been up to as well as upcoming events in our November 2013 e-newsletter.

 

 

 

Posted in News |

CPISRA Technical Development Workshops in Africa

BlazeSports’ Director of International Development, Stuart Sharp, as part of his role with CPISRA as Head of Technical Control recently visited Sierra Leone to deliver a CP seven a side workshop. The first of two CPISRA Technical Development Workshops, targeting the African Region, was held in Sierra Leone in October. The workshop, which was delivered in partnership with the Sierra Leone FA and the National Paralympic Committee, was attended by 42 participants and hosted at the country’s National Football Stadium. The content focused on coach education, classification and  development structures to help those attended to have the appropriate knowledge to build CP football programs in the future.

BlazeSports' Director of International Sport Development Stuart Sharp

BlazeSports’ Director of International Sport Development Stuart Sharp

Mr Unisa Deen Kargbo, who met with the CPISRA football committee members during the 2012 Paralympic Games, was instrumental in bring the course to Sierra Leone. He  said upon reflection  ” this workshop has been excellent in providing the tools which we need to take the game forward in our country. We will now use this newly gained knowledge to position our athletes into 4 teams to play within a league structure. It is of course our dream to reach the Paralympics one day and now the hard work begins”. 

Both the opening and closing ceremonies attached to the course were attended, by several important dignitaries including the country’s Minister of Sport. During the ceremony, which was broadcast on national television, the Minister pledged to support the development of CP football in the country and looked forward to seeing the national team in action for the first time. 

Rene Jurrius, one of the CPISRA course tutors said “I am really pleased with the level of organization and structure being provided to CP football in Sierra Leon . The players here have a great deal of potential and I feel with further development they could go on to represent their country strongly”.

René Jurrius, CPISRA tutor in front of workshop particuipants

René Jurrius, CPISRA tutor in front of workshop participants

Stuart Sharp,BlazeSports’ Director of International Development and  CPISRA’s Head of Technical Control for football was also in attendance and remarked “I hope that those who have completed this course become agents of change in the country. CP football, and sport in general, for persons with disabilities can provide multiple long term benefits to an individual’s quality of life. I hope that the enthusiasm shown by the course participants can be sustained and new opportunities can now be created for CP football in the country.  Following the strengthening of grassroot structures I hope to see Sierra Leone emerge from the African Region and be represented on the world stage”.

As part of a targeted approach to increase the number of counties participating from the African region, CPISRA will return to the continent in December to train a new set of coaches, referees and administrators but this time Tunisa.

Posted in Featured, Football 7-a-side, Global Initiatives, International, News |

Thanks to all our awesome GA Gives Day Donors!

Posted in Featured, News, Support Us |

Junior Wheelchair Hawks Win Double Honors

2013 Jr WC Hawks Logo

 

The Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks open their 2013-14 season at the Winter Classic Wheelchair Basketball Tournament at the Talbert Recreation Center in Mooresville, North Carolina on November 2-3.  Hosted by the Charlotte Rollin Bobcats, the Abilities Unlimited of the Carolinas and Bridge II Sports, this tournament is the first of four tournaments before the April 2014 National Championships in Louisville.

The Junior W/C Hawks will have both a Prep Team (ages 8-12) and a Varsity Team (ages 13-19) competing in this tournament.  The Junior W/C Hawks’ game schedule for the tournament is:

Saturday, November 2:

8:30: Junior W/C Hawks Prep 28 vs. 10 Jr. Thunder (NC)

10:00: Junior W/C Hawks Varsity 56 vs. 15 Lakeshore (AL)

11:30:  Junior W/C Hawks Varsity 41 vs. 15 Jr. Thunder (NC)

2:00 Junior W/C Hawks Prep 20 vs. 2 Lakeshore (AL)

4:00 Junior W/C Hawks Varsity 55 vs. 11 Music City Thunder (TN)

 

Sunday, November 3:

8:30: Junior W/C Hawks Prep 26 vs. 2 Charlotte Bobcats

9:30: Junior W/C Hawks Prep 18 vs. 10 Mississippi WheelCats

11:30: Junior W/C Hawks Varsity 41 vs. 19 Music City Thunder (TN)

 

Junior Wheelchair Hawks Perfect in Season Opener

For the second season in a row the Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks opened their season with perfect first day at the North Carolina Winter Classic. The Junior Wheelchair Hawks’ Prep team started the tournament with a 28 – 10 win over the Jr. Thunder (NC). Collin Lancaster led all scorers with 10 points followed by Eric Francis, Taevan Grant and Cameron Elzey each with 6 points.

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2013-14 Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks Prep Team

Second year players Zachary Armas and Cade Maynor both played tremendous defensive.  Rookies Michael Kitchens and John Joiner played in their first NWBA prep game and also played great defense.

 

On the Varsity side of the tournament the Junior Wheelchair Hawks opened their tournament with a convincing win over their local rival, the Lakeshore Lakers (AL). Josh Joines led all scored with 28 points, while three Hawks, Samuel Armas, Treyvon Smith and Ben Baxter each added 8 points. Luke Hutchinson rounded out the Hawks’ scoring with 4 points. Brent O’Grady, Bryan Powell and Chance Boyd helped lead the team’s exceptional defense and the Hawks win 56-15.

The Varsity squad played back-to-back games facing the Junior Thunder (NC). The continued their impressive defense, while getting 10 0f 11 players on the offensive score sheet. Josh Joines led the Hawks with 8 points, while Treyvon Smith scored 7 and Samuel Armas scored 6. Makayla Jones, Ben Baxter and Chance Boyd each scored 4 points while Bryan Powell, Luke Hutchinson and Polina Glukhova each scored 2 points.  Rookies Makayla Jones and Polina Glukhova score their first ever points in a NWBA game.  Hawks win 41-15.

 

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2013-14 Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks Varsity Team

 

 Junior Wheelchair Hawks Win Double Honors

The Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks were a perfect 8 for 8 at the 2013 North Carolina Winter Classic winning both the Varsity and Prep divisions. The Junior Wheelchair Hawks’ Prep team had back-to-back games on Sunday. Their first opponents were the host team, the Charlotte Rollin Bobcats.  Collin Lancaster led all scorers with 10 points followed by Eric Francis with 8, Cameron Elzey with 4 points and Taevan Grant and John Joiner each with 2 points. Hawks win 26-2.

In their second game of the day, the Junior Wheelchair Hawks Prep team faced the newly formed Mississippi Wheelcats. The Wheelcats proved to be the Hawks toughest competition of the weekend.  The Hawks continued with their trademark tenacious defense led by Cameron Elzy holding the Wheelcats to only 2 points at half time. Hawks got 8 points from rookie Eric Francis and veteran Collin Lancaster, with 2 points from Cameron Elzy to win 18-10. Rookies Michael Kitchen and John Joiner played well in their first tournament, while second year players Cade Manor and Zachery Armas rotated turns as the 5th starter.

Colin and Cameron

Cameron Elzy (left) All-Tournament Team and Collin Lancaster (right) MVP for the Winter Classic Prep Tournament.

With four straight wins, the Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks Prep Team won their second consecutive Winter Classic Championship. In addition to the Championship honors, Cameron Elzy was selected to the All-Tournament Team and Collin Lancaster was named MVP for the Winter Classic Prep Tournament.

The Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks’ Varsity Team earned a spot in Sunday’s Championship games with three wins on Saturday.  Their opponent was determined by the Lakeshore (AL) vs Music City (TN) game earlier Sunday morning. Music City squeezed out a close win and would face the Hawks for the second time in the tournament.  Defense was the key to the first win (55-11) over Music City and the Hawks proved once again to be up to the task. The Hawks started strong behind 12 points from Josh Joines and 7 points from Samuel Armas and led 31-0 at half time.  The Hawks defense allowed for all 11 players to play and the Hawks got additional scoring from Chance Boyd (6), Treyvon Smith (4), Luke Hutchinson (4), Ben Baxter (4), Bryan Powell (2) and Brent O’Grady (2). Rookie players Makayla Jones, Paulina Glukhova and Austin Davis played great minutes in their first tournament.  Hawks win 41-19.

Joshua Joines and Treyvon Smith

Josh Joines (left) Varsity All-Tournament Team and Treyvon Smith (right) MVP for the Varsity tournament

Josh Joines was selected to the Varsity All-Tournament Team and Treyvon Smith was named MVP for the Varsity tournament. 

For more information about the Atlanta Junior Wheelchair Hawks basketball program contact Jeff Jones:  jjones@blazesports.org.

Posted in Featured, News, Programs, Wheelchair Basketball |